Pros: Very impressive performance for an incredibly reasonable price. How DO they do it?
Cons: Perhaps slightly warm sound for some, ear cups a tad too small for my giant elephant ears.
How can there not be a review for these budget gems, when I've found so many people recommending them on here? Let's rectify that...
(This is basically a copy and paste from my comment in the Takstar thread on here - mods, please delete if not appropriate?)
So after a ton of online research on account of the fact that I'm on a strictly budget-sized budget, I took a risk and ordered a pair of Pro80s. Why was it a risk? Because frankly, how can a pair of £34 headphones be any good? How could they be better than my 'much' (to me) more expensive AKG K271? It's gotta be internet hype, right?
DAMN, these headphones are good! How on Earth can they manufacture, market and distribute these for this price and make money? I have limited headphone experience, but these have to be one of the best cost/performance bargains out there. Sincerely, my thanks to every one of you on here who pointed me in their direction - I'm a very happy boy :)
Thoughts? With no burn-in, they just sound 'right' to me. Not 'Wow, that's clear!' or 'Oooh, that's warm!', just... 'right'. They get out of the way and let me enjoy my music the way I like it to sound. I've always enjoyed a V-scoop EQ, rolling off the treble for playback (as opposed to mixing) and that's what these deliver right out of the box. I have spent HOURS tweaking the EQ in Audirvana to get my AKGs sounding the way I want them to. I just turned it off, plugged in the Takstars and smiled - no tweaks required!
To my untrained ears, the bass is strong without being bass boost obnoxious by any means (maybe just a touch flabby?), the mids don't seem too recessed and the treble isn't too biting (something I struggle with on many sets). Remember, this is as per my taste, which I think is different from audiophile neutrality. Given that they are an enjoyable 'fun' listen, I wondered if the detail was lacking, but going back over my favourite test tracks showed otherwise. I can still pick up on the same little nuggets I look for. My analytical AKGs did expose more detail, but I just didn't enjoy them as an experience until I EQ'd quite a bit. For me, the telling fact is that rather than just listen to the key sections of these songs and moving on, I tended to listen to each track in full because I was enjoying the experience. And that for me is the endgame.
Soundstaging is decent rather than amazing, but you always have a clear idea of which direction the instruments are coming from. It could be wider/more spacious, but I'm not going to grumble. I mean, come on - these headphones cost less than some cushions or cables!
I have the dial on my amp lower than for my AKGs and about the same as my Sennheiser PX200s. I was surprised to find that they sound perfectly good straight out of my Samsung Galaxy S5, too. Given their size / look, I really can't see me taking them out of the house, but it's good to know I can use them elsewhere with no real impact on performance.
Niggles? Well, the design is total meh to me. Just... dull. Still, I didn't buy them to look flash. Construction seems solid enough, but I wonder about those cables going from the cups to the band. And the cups are *just* too small for my flapping lobes. They butt up against the cushions in a way that isn't uncomfortable, just ever so slightly distracting and I reposition them more often than I would like. Would the Brainwavz pads fix this?
I bought these as a stopgap until I could afford ATHM50x (told you I was on a budget), but TBH, I'm starting to wonder if I can't just skip that step and go straight to HD600/650 (or X2) - any comments/comparisons?
Overall, I have to say that I'm very impressed. I have nothing to really judge them against, but I can't imagine there's a better sounding option at this price and I would be very happy with this sound at £100.
Thanks Head-Fi for turning me onto such a bargain :)